Hong Kong Students Move to England to Attend EduKick Manchester Football and Education Academy

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Hong Kong teenagers Allen Lee Batteiger, Irving Choi and Ryan Gary Pope, all aspiring pro soccer players, traveled abroad to England to attend EduKick Manchester Academic Year Football Academy

The training sessions are very professional and we are learning a lot of tactical information as well as developing our skills”
- Hong Kong resident and second year EduKick Manchester Academy footballer,
Irving Choi.

Allen Lee Batteiger, Irving Choi and Ryan Gary Pope, each an aspiring professional footballer from Hong Kong, are currently attending a year-long academic football academy in Manchester, England with private school education provided by EduKick educational partners Inlingua Manchester and daily soccer training by Manchester City Platt Lane Development Team.

EduKick Manchester Football & Education Academy is an academic year football development academy located in the heart of English football, Manchester, England. The course is designed for serious young international footballers that wish to continue their education in England while training in a competitive soccer academy environment. The academic year-long soccer course features daily coaching sessions by Manchester City Football Club`s Football Development Team at Platt Lane complex, home of the MCFC Academy.

The three boys from Hong Kong, two of which attended the EduKick course last year, are studying daily at their private school, Inligua Manchester located in the Brookhouse building in the center of Manchester, near Piccadilly Square. The academy players reside with local English host families that EduKick Manchester pre-screens and carefully selects and are totally immersed in English culture by living and eating at their host family for the duration of their stay on the course.

However, its the soccer that enticed these three Hong Kong residents to leave home and live abroad in Manchester to pursue their dream of someday playing professional soccer. Irving Choi, who attended International Christian School (ICS) in Hong Kong and played club soccer for South China, says, "Before the program, I was anxious on how the players will be, how the city will be like, how the coaching will be like and so on. When I finally arrived, I was more than excited, but I wanted to make sure that I did my best every day. The program is quite smoothly run, with classes in the morning to training in the afternoon. It is also a test of my independence and how I can improve myself in both football knowledge and also how I live. I believe that the more you put in, the more you get out. The less you put in, the more you regret afterwards."

EduKick Manchester have an established network of host families within the local Manchester area located within a few minutes journey of the schools city centre location. The boys enjoy staying with host families which allows them to make the most of the different cultural experiences the U.K. has to offer. Manchester has a very extensive rail, bus and metro network making travel very easy for the boys to commute between the School and their host family. “The host family is great. The house is enormous, I have my own room and the food is great...said Allen Lee Batteiger, a second year academy player and one of the team leaders on the course. He continues, “the host family is only a short 20 minute journey by train for me and the public transport in Manchester is very convenient to get around.”

At 9:00 am each day the boys begin their academic classes. All three of them have a good level of English and study a “BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Sport” a course designed to provide them with a qualification that will allow them to work within the sports industry or gain entry to University. The natural environment allows the boys to improve their English language level but the EduKick Manchester school does also offer daily English languages classes, IGCSE’s, A – Levels and USA High School Grade 9 – 12. “What we learn in the classroom is what we use on the pitch...” says Irving Choi, we learn about sports injuries, nutrition and athletes lifestyles which is all very useful.”

After taking a break for lunch the boys from Hong Kong join their academy mates (currently 25 attending from 19 different countries) on a short journey by private bus to the “Platt Lane Complex home of the Manchester City Football Club Youth Academy”. Allen Batteiger is impressed, “the facilities are great. We train on the 3G turf field but when the weather is bad we can train on the indoor field so sessions are never cancelled."

The daily technical & tactical football training sessions are conducted by the Platt Lane Manchester City Development Team coaches alongside the EduKick Manchester Director of Football. “The training sessions are very professional and we are learning a lot of tactical information as well as developing our skills.” said Irving Choi. In addition to the daily coaching the boys have full access to the fitness centre onsite where they have fitness sessions twice a week as part of the timetable as well as having the ability to workout anytime they wish in their own time. The EduKick Manchester squad play weekly soccer matches against opposition selected by the Platt Lane Manchester City Development Team coaches to challenge each individual at every stage of their development throughout the year-long course. The aspiring professionals from Hong Kong have already played sixteen fixtures during the first term with highlight victories against Manchester City & Burnley Academy development squads.

Also during the first term, Irving, Allen, Ryan and their EduKick Manchester mates had the opportunity, as part of the course, to attend the Manchester City Champions League group matches at the Etihad stadium as well as selected Barclay's Premier League matches. Now in the second term, the academy players are excited at the opportunities they have coming up to visit English professional clubs in the North West for "Train and Play" events. These visits to surrounding clubs are intended to provide the boys with an insight into English professional football at various levels.

EduKick Manchester's, Ryan Gary Pope, a highly regarded youth player back in Hong Kong commented, “Watching the Champions league games was excellent. It really helps us especially watching the professional players playing in our positions and then talking through the game with our coaches the next day and watching video footage of certain tactical things, then trying them out on the pitch.”

Interested parties should inquire about EduKick Manchester Football & Education Academy at the contact information provided in this release.

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